I only planted one zucchini this year. I’ve learned my lesson and it was a risk I was prepared to take that the one plant might not grow. Well it did, a lot.
Now I’m collecting zucchinis’ every day and filling up the fridge. I have given away as many as I can but it was time to tackle the surplus. Yesterday was quite cool and wet so I stayed in the kitchen and this is what I did….
I had bought the mandolin last year and not really used it as I have never had one before. I’m not sure that I’m using it correctly yet, as the instructions were pretty slack and I’ve never seen one in action before. However, it did slice the zucchinis’ to a uniform size and I planned to dry them all in the trusty dehydrator. See below.
There are six trays all full of zucchini slices there and I decided to put the machine in the back shed so I wouldn’t make the kitchen steamy and I wouldn’t have to listen to the noise. I kept a regular check on it throughout the 5-6 hours that it was running and all was fine. It was still slightly strange though, because I’ve previously dried apples and tomatoes in the machine and the aromas during the process are wonderful. There are no aromas whatsoever with drying zucchini!
And what to do with all the sliced zucchini that I had prepared that wouldn’t fit into the dehydrator. Onto the interweb and a recipe for zucchini relish that was easy and relatively fast.
Naturally, I didn’t have all the stated ingredients but with a little bit of this and a little bit of that, I think it worked out pretty well.
We will have a taste test in about one week. The jar holds the six trays of dried zucchini slices. So I guess I’ll be doing some more later.
It’s been an exciting time in the garden. I have my second batch of rocket powering away, tomatoes (of course), radishes, snow peas, sugar snap peas, cucumber, potatoes, red onions (only a few), scarlet runner beans (overtaking the zucchini in kilo’s) and button squash.
Still to come are eggplants and hopefully the teeny tiny rock melons in the grow house will get bigger and bigger over time.
We’re having a lot of trouble with birds this year and they started with one of the plum trees and virtually got the lot. This tree only does it’s thing brilliantly every other year and this is not one of those years!. But when the birds started on the little peach tree, I was out there with my basket filling it up. I wouldn’t mind as much if the birds finished the plum but it’s a peck here and a peck there and with the holes in the fruit the ants then go in and have a party!
It was the same with one of the pear trees. M went out and picked them all in one go as they were still quite firm but very sweet. He then proceeded to peel them all sitting in the sun outside. I relented and helped but instead of preparing them for stewing and freezing, he made the whole lot into a pear sauce. I’m not sure what to do with pear sauce but I’m sure I’ll think of something soon.
And then the freezer died. On Australia Day. When all the shops are closed. We spoke to our electrician friend to see if it was fixable but no, it was well and truly dead. An evening of research re economic usage and star ratings and it was up to Hobart the next day to buy a new, slightly larger one. We were able to get one which has six stars (in the old rating system) and it’s slimline too, so it doesn’t take anymore room than the old tuckerbox we used to have. I worked it out that this old Westinghouse Tuckerbox freezer had been moved to six different houses and interstate once over the twenty years period that I owned it. And it had never broken down – not once. I bet all the new appliances these days won’t last that long.
So, it’s back to the garden and/or kitchen for me. Time is precious and at this time of the year there is soooooo much to do!